Labor cuts $192.5 million from ARENA, abandons new clean jobs

Jun 23, 2021 | Federal News, WA Labor

The Labor Party last night lined up with the Greens to gut new funding to the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).

Labor Senators teamed up with the Australian Greens to cut $192.5 million of new funding for ARENA and disallow a regulation that expands the clean technology agency’s mandate to play a major role in driving the next generation of low-emissions technologies.

The funding included support for electric vehicle charging infrastructure and microgrid infrastructure to make energy affordable and reliable in regional and remote Australia.

ARENA welcomed the changes and calling it a “new era for ARENA” to be able to work with the next generation of energy technologies.

The Government’s approach has received wide industry support from over 28 businesses, peak bodies, and climate change groups including the Business Council of Australia, the AiGroup, the National Farmers Federation, ClimateWorks Australia and the Investor Group for Climate Change.

The loss of this funding will cost up to 1,400 new jobs in emerging industries and would have supported industries like mining, agriculture, transport, manufacturing and electricity, which employ over 2.2 million Australians.

Labor has walked away from clean tech jobs, and blue-collar jobs.

Labor MP Joel Fitzgibbon – slammed the move as “nothing short of genius” for Chris Bowen to force Labor MPs to “heroically vote against carbon reduction initiatives that Labor actually supports.”

The decision showed that Anthony Albanese cannot be trusted to support the long-term future of Australia’s resources and agriculture industries.

Despite the Australian Labor Party platform explicitly supporting these technologies, every Senator in the Australian Labor Party room has now voted against them.

It has not only shown that Labor is economically reckless, but that their promises cannot be trusted.

There are only two ways to reduce emissions: through technology, or taxes. By abandoning investing in technology today, the Labor Party has shown the 2.2. million Australians working in energy intensive industries that their solution to climate change is more taxes.

Labor has shown they will always choose taxes, which means Australian families, farmers, workers and our regions will pay more.

They have sent a clear message to Australian voters that the Labor Party would prefer to play politics than support Australian jobs.